ONDANGWA – Namibian borders remain porous and vulnerable to illicit trafficking and organised crime, the head of the Namibian Police Special Field Force Commissioner Elias Mutota has warned.
Mutota added there was an urgent need for borders to be properly demarcated, delimitated and de-bushed for efficient and effective patrol.
In comparison to some of the neighbouring countries bordering Namibia, Mutota said their borders are clearly marked and well maintained.
“While on our side, it is a different scenario. This status quo makes it difficult for the communities living along the borders to realise they have illegally crossed into the neighbouring territories,” said Mutota, who was speaking during the official opening of the counter-insurgency operations training at Ondangwa on Friday.
Apart from the demarcation challenges, Mutota said the directorate is also haunted by a lack of manpower, ageing fleet, living and office accommodation.
He thus urged for the prioritisation to the regions that did not benefit from the financial year to now benefit, citing that the latter will boost morale and encourage members to be redeployed or transferred for border patrols. According to Mutota, a number of factors, including retirement, death and transfers were affecting the efficient border patrols by the police.
Police chief Sebastian Ndeitunga said the training course is vital, as it equips participants with knowledge and skills to adequately respond to contemporary challenges such as that of global terrorism.
Ndeitunga said it will further prepare the members to be ready to counter any possibility of insurgency. “I, therefore, implore you to cascade it further down to every member of the Special Field Force,” said Ndeitunga.
The three-month training course, which started on 1 March, will end in May. The 90 trainees will supplement the existing 2 356 members to guard against transactional crimes.
The training is being held at the Ruben Danger Ashipala Training Centre at Ondangwa.